Dinner Tonight: Chard Salad with Garlic and Parmesan

September  8, 2015

Today: Move over lettuce, there's a new salad green in town. 

Salad, we love you. But salad, sometimes ol' lettuce doesn't make the cut. We want something just as green, but with lots of texture, a whisper of garlic, salty Parmesan, and a generous amount of lemony-olive oil dressing. In other words, we want this chard salad and we want it now.

Shop the Story

If you have a baguette lying around, watch Amanda show you how to make breadcrumbs. If not, buy some breadcrumbs with sizeable nuggets of crumbs—not any of that grainy stuff. Sorry, lettuce, we don't mean to be mean, but this chard salad's supreme.

Grocery List 

(Organized by area of the market) 

Serves 4, as a starter

1 bunch Swiss chard
1 lemon
3/4 cup grated Parmesan
1 1/2 cups fresh breadcrumbs

We are assuming you already extra virgin olive oil, salt, and garlic. If not, add those to your list, too!

With 20 minutes before dinner, wash and dry the chard and set aside. Grab that lemon and zest and juice it—you'll need about 2 1/2 tablespoons of juice.

Combine the lemon juice with 1 teaspoon lemon zest and a pinch of salt. Slowly whisk in 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil and set aside. Take the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil and warm it in a heavy skillet over medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs and stir, frequently, until they're golden brown and crisp like all breadcrumbs should be. Stir in the garlic, let it get toasty for another minute, and then remove from heat. 

Seperate the chard's leaves from their stems and finely chop the stems. Stack a few leaves atop one another, roll them like a cigar, and cut the cigar into thin 1/8-inch ribbons. Repeat the stacking, rolling, and cutting until all the leaves are shredded.

Put the chard stems and leaves in a bowl and toss gently with the Parmesan and two thirds of the lemon dressing. Taste, then add more dressing if you'd like. Toss in the breadcrumbs and serve immediately—we don't want sad, soggy breadcrumbs here. Lettuce gather, dinner is served! 

Photo by James Ransom 

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Tucker & Me
    Tucker & Me
  • FoodPinup
  • 702551
  • xoch
  • Jackie Stauffer
    Jackie Stauffer
I fall in love with every sandwich I ever meet.


Tucker &. September 9, 2015
I find the recipe to be a bit assuming, which is fine by me. I know how to pull together a lemon vinaigrette. And, how to add a bit of garlic. For those who don't, it might be helpful to clearly state what needs to be done with what. Just sayin'
FoodPinup September 9, 2015
It looks very delicious. I love to eat green salad, I am gonna try this!!
702551 September 8, 2015
It should be noted that chard is a spring harvest crop: April, May, early June.

Here in September, we are way outside the ideal harvest dates for chard. Plus, young chard is more suitable for salads. Older, mature plants tend to be more bitter; the bitterness diminishes when the chard is cooked.
Jessica M. September 9, 2015
Your experience is not universal. Where I live, chard grows outside year-round.
Tucker &. September 9, 2015
In Vermont it grows throughout the spring and summer. I do agree the younger or smaller leaves are more tender, but when you chiffonade this I don't think it really matters all that much. And....I have to confess I added a bit of kale too. Shame on me :-(
xoch September 8, 2015
Can't wait to try this! Is the garlic minced, pressed or whole? is it half or a whole clove?
Riddley G. September 8, 2015
It is minced!
Jackie S. September 8, 2015
I love that this is organized by section of the grocery store! So helpful and looks delish!